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  • WDCH
  • Oct. 15, 2008
  • WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 15, 2008, AT 8 PM
    WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 22, 2008, AT 8 PM

    These concerts are generously sponsored by the Colburn Foundation; Media Sponsor: 89.3 KPCC

    With precision, lyricism and clarity, András Schiff continues the extraordinary task, which he embarked upon last season, of performing all 32 piano sonatas of Beethoven in chronological order, with a pair of recitals, Wednesday, October 15 and October 22, at 8 p.m., at Walt Disney Concert Hall. These performances kick off the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s 2008/09 Colburn Celebrity series, which features some of the world’s leading virtuosos.

    Beethoven composed his 32 sonatas over a 30-year timeframe, and the nine pieces Schiff performs in October come from the composer’s personally dramatic yet professionally brilliant middle period. It was at during this period that Beethoven composed two of his greatest sonatas, Sonata No. 21 in C, Op. 53, “Waldstein” (October 15), and Sonata No. 23 in F minor, Op. 57, “Appassionata” (October 22), in spite of his worsening deafness.

    In addition to the “Waldstein,” Schiff also performs Sonata No. 16 in G, Op. 31, No. 1; Sonata No. 17 in D minor, Op. 31, No. 2, "Tempest;" and Sonata No. 18 in E-flat, Op. 31, No. 3, October 15. The following week, he returns with Sonata No. 22 in F, Op. 54; Sonata No. 23 in F minor, Op. 57, "Appassionata;" Sonata No. 24 in F-sharp, Op. 78; Sonata No. 25 in G, Op. 79; and Sonata No. 26 in E-flat, Op. 81a, "Les Adieux."

    This season, the Colburn Celebrity recital series includes some of the leading pianists of our time. Future recitals feature Emanuel Ax and Yefim Bronfman (November 12, 2008); Leif Ove Andsnes with violinist Christian Tetzlaff (January 29, 2009); Evgeny Kissin (March 16, 2009); Schiff’s return to complete his two-year cycle of Beethoven sonatas (March 25 and April 1, 2009); and pianist Krystian Zimerman (April 26, 2009).

    ANDRÁS SCHIFF was born in Budapest, Hungary, in 1953, and is today a British citizen. Recitals and special projects take him to all of the international music capitals and include cycles of the major keyboard works of Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Schubert, Schumann, Chopin and Bartók. In 2004, he began series of performances that explore the 32 Beethoven piano sonatas in chronological order, a project recorded live for ECM New Series and to be released in eight volumes through 2008. The Beethoven Sonata Project in its entirety continues this season in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Ann Arbor. Individual recitals are also slated for Chicago, North Carolina, Ottawa, Philadelphia, Princeton and Washington, DC. In 1999, Schiff created his own chamber orchestra, the Cappella Andrea Barca, for a seven-year series of the complete Mozart piano concertos, taking place at the Mozartwoche of the Internationale Stiftung Mozarteum in Salzburg. The group, which consists of international soloists, chamber musicians and close friends, toured North America during the 2005/06 and 2006/07 seasons in a series of concerts at Carnegie Hall and Alice Tully Hall to commemorate the 250th anniversary of Mozart's birth. The six concerts included 12 of the Mozart piano concerti, chamber music, and symphonies. He has conducted Bach's B Minor Mass and Haydn's Creation with the London Philharmonia, and was conductor and soloist with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe on a critically acclaimed tour of New York, Chicago and San Francisco. He is presently joint artistic director of the "Ittinger Pfingstkonzerte," a chamber music festival he founded in Switzerland with Heinz Holliger, in 1995. In 1998, Schiff started a similar series entitled "Hommage to Palladio" at the Teatro Olimpico in Vicenza. In September 2004, he became artist-in-residence of "Kunstfest Weimar," a new festival in Germany. Schiff has established a prolific discography, including recordings for Teldec (1994 - 1997), London/Decca (1981 - 1994) and, since 1997, ECM New Series. He has received several international recording awards, including two Grammys for "Best Classical Instrumental Soloist (Without Orchestra)" for the Bach English Suites, and "Best Vocal Recording" for Schubert's Schwanengesang with tenor Peter Schreier. In 2009, Schiff releases an all-Schumann disc on the EMI label. Among other honors, he was awarded the Bartók Prize in 1991 and the Claudio Arrau Memorial medal from the Robert Schumann Society in Düsseldorf in 1994. In March 1996, Schiff received the highest Hungarian distinction, the Kossuth Prize, and in May 1997, he received the Leonie Sonnings Music Prize in Copenhagen. He was awarded the Palladio d'Oro by the city of Vicenza, and the Musikfest Preis Bremen for "outstanding international artistic work" in 2003. András Schiff also has been made an Honorary Professor by the Music Schools in Budapest, Detmold and Munich.

    The Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, under Music Director Esa-Pekka Salonen, presents the finest in orchestral and chamber music, recitals, new music, jazz, world music and holiday concerts at two of the most remarkable places anywhere to experience music — Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Hollywood Bowl. In addition to a 30-week winter subscription season at Walt Disney Concert Hall, the LA Phil presents a 12-week summer festival at the legendary Hollywood Bowl, summer home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic and home of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra. In fulfilling its commitment to the community, the Association’s involvement with Los Angeles extends to educational programs, community concerts and children's programming, ever seeking to provide inspiration and delight to the broadest possible audience.


    Walt Disney Concert Hall

    111 S. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles

    András Schiff, piano

    Wednesday, October 15, 2008, AT 8 PM

    BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 16 in G, Op. 31, No. 1

    BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 17 in D minor, Op. 31, No. 2, "Tempest"
    BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 18 in E-flat, Op. 31, No. 3

    BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 21 in C, Op. 53, "Waldstein"

    Wednesday, October 22, 2008, AT 8 PM

    BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 22 in F, Op. 54

    BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 23 in F minor, Op. 57, "Appassionata"

    BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 24 in F-sharp, Op. 78

    BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 25 in G, Op. 79

    BEETHOVEN Sonata No. 26 in E-flat, Op. 81a, "Les Adieux"

    These concerts are generously sponsored by the Colburn Foundation

    Media Sponsor: 89.3 KPCC

    Tickets ($17 - $92) are on sale now at the Walt Disney Concert Hall box office, online at, or via credit card by phone at 323.850.2000. When available, choral bench seats ($17), will be released for sale to selected Philharmonic, Colburn Celebrity Recital, and Baroque Variations performances beginning at noon on the Tuesday of the second week prior to the concert. A limited number of $10 rush tickets for seniors and full time students may be available at the Walt Disney Concert Hall box office two hours prior to the performance. Valid identification is required; one ticket per person; cash only. Groups of 12 or more may be eligible for special discounts for selected concerts and seating areas. For information, please call 323.850.2000.

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  • Contact:

    Lisa White,, 213.972.3408; Photos: 213.972.3034